The deportees would detrain at the railway station in Bohušovice, located on the main line between Prague and Ústí nad Labem. (They were usually brought here in ordinary second-class trains; the infamous cattle wagons were used to transport people further east, that is, from Terezín to further concentration camps.) After the arrival to Bohušovice, they would be escorted to Terezín, two kilometers away from here. After 1943, when the new siding, built by the prisoners, was finished, the trains rode directly to Terezín.


On March 24, 1944, I had the honor of arriving in Terezín. To be precise, the train stopped at Bohušovice, not Terezín. A few gentlemen of the SS entered our train and grabbed us. We in turn grabbed our packs and then everything was thrown helter skelter onto a wagon pulled by a tractor. After a distressing trip accompanied by a cordon of gendarmes, who surrounded us to make sure that no one in the precious load of seventeen Jews was lost, we arrived at the infamous and almost legendary Terezín. Again gentlemen in uníform appeared and shouted something at us in German, and only later did I understand that they were strongly advising us to hand over our gold watches, money and suchlike if we valued our lives. Then they stripped us, searched us to see if we had really handed everything over, found a few things, took them away, and instead of giving the former owners a voucher, slapped their faces. And so we entered another world, ruled over by the Jews themselves - the infirmary in the Ústí barracks. We were checked for lice, or so the doctor said. Then he pumped a few cc's of anti-typhoid serum into us and we were dismissed into the ghetto. Accompanied by strange, self-important gentlemen, some with yellow bands round their black caps, we went to the delousing station. While the Bademeisters scrubbed and soaped us, they fired questions at us. They wanted to know what was new in Prague: are the coffee houses and shops closed? Is it true that the statue of St. Wenceslas has been demolished? Within the space of a few minutes we heard so much nonsense that our heads were spinning: these were the Terezín bonkes.* Finally, at 11 o'clock at night, they took us to the Hannover barracks where bunks were allotted to us. Sleeping was out of the question, because the alarm went off three times, and there were fleas and other vermin. That's about all I have to say about my arrival in Terezín.

Cortez (Unknown author)